THE National Museum celebrated International Museum Day (IMD) 2018 on May 18 with the opening of the National Museum of Natural History located at Rizal Park Complex, P. Burgos St., Manila.
NM Board of Trustees Chairman Ramon R. del Rosario called on the public to visit National Museum facilities in Manila and other parts of the country to learn about the nation’s culture and heritage.
“We are promoting to Filipinos and visitors from all around the world our National Museum in the Philippines. Here can be found knowledge, appreciation, and love for our heritage as Filipinos and as people, in the fields of fine arts, anthropology, the natural world and their historical context,” del Rosario said.
Del Rosario said the National Museum made accessible to the public its facilities from Batanes to Jolo through the support of the national government and other museum partners in the private and other sectors.
The theme of this year’s IMD was “Hyperconnected museums: New approaches, new publics.” The celebration aims to raise awareness that museums are important means of cultural exchange, enrichment of cultures and development of mutual understanding, cooperation and peace among peoples.
NM Director Jeremy Barns reiterated that entrance is free to all National Museum facilities in the country since July 1, 2016.
Barns invited the public to visit the National Museums of Fine Arts, Anthropology, and Natural History in Manila and the regional and branch museums located in Angono in the province of Rizal; Kabayan in Kabayan, Benguet; Kiangan in Ifugao; Palawan Museum in Quezon, Palawan: NM Butuan Branch in Doongan, Butuan; Tabaco Museum in Tabaco, Albay; Fort Pilar Museum in Zamboanga City; Marinduque Branch Museum in Boac, Marinduque; and Jolo.
In Western Visayas, the National Museum has two sites located in Iloilo City – the restored Iloilo Rehabilitation Center formerly Iloilo Provincial Jail located at Capitol Complex, Bonifacio Drive, City Proper, and the Old Jaro Municipal Hall located at Washington St. Corner Plaza Rizal St. Brgy. Benedicto, Jaro.
These built-heritage buildings are both declared Important Cultural Property by the National Museum.
In time for the IMD celebration, the National Museum marked another milestone in the history of the institution – the opening of the National Museum of Natural History located at the Old Agriculture and Commerce Building, formerly the Department of Tourism building.
“The nation’s wait is over – our National Museum of Natural History is now open to the public. Aside from the beautiful built-structure, the public can view in the NMNH the National Collections on Botany, Geology, and Paleontology, and Zoology,” Barns said.
Barns disclosed that one the main attractions of the NMNH is the “Tree of Life” – a stylised tree trunk holding up the dome canopy of the Shell Centennial Courtyard and the shaft of the round glass elevator. It conveys visitors to the 5th floor where the first exhibitions are encountered.
“Of course, part of the exhibit is the taxidermied body of ‘Lolong’, the longest crocodile held in captivity,” Barns added.
National Museum is open from 10 am to 5 pm (last admission at 4:30 pm), Tuesday to Sunday.